Mike Matusow is a world class player who gained just as much fame through his blow-ups, meltdowns and self-destructive partying
Name: Mike Matusow
DOB: April 30th 1968
Tournament winnings: $7.3m
Nickname: The Mouth
Greatest moment: 2005 Tournament of Champions winner
Mike Matusow started out dealing poker before turning his attentions to playing poker in the early
1990’s. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder he’s battled with depression throughout his career. This hasn’t stopped him winning 3 WSOP bracelets but has probably contributed to some of the more negative periods in his life which have in turn increased his fame or infamy.
Formerly a true degenerate gambler Mike would often spend his tournament winnings on sports betting and hard partying. He went bust numerous times and hit a lifetime low in 2004 when he was sentenced to 6 months in jail on drugs charges.
In 2005 though he came out fighting, final tabled the WSOP main event for $1m then won the Tournament of Champions for another $1m. He was back on track, thinking positively again and vowing never to return to his darker days.
Another huge knock was around the corner in the form of the UB.com online cheating scandal where he allegedly lost $1.5m when a company insider and supposed close friend could see his, and everyone else’s cards. This ‘destroyed his heart’ and some would say he hasn’t yet fully recovered, 2009 being an awful year and one to forget. He’s recently had his autobiography, Check-Raising The Devil, published which is a no-holds barred account of his life covering all the ups and downs. He seems to have his demons more under control these days and his future is his own script to write.